Camarillo Ranch Weddings and Events Will Continue as Planned (Post Date: 6/27/19)

Camarillo, California – The Camarillo City Council positions the City to plan for the continuation of booked weddings and events, with no interruption in services, in the event that the Camarillo Ranch Foundation and the City of Camarillo fail to reach an agreement by September 15, 2019.

“The City Council is committed to ensuring that all booked weddings and events at the Camarillo Ranch continue as planned, and by whatever means necessary,” City Manager Dave Norman stated in his presentation at the City Council meeting on June 26, 2019. “The City Council is also committed to making the Camarillo Ranch a venue available for future bookings of weddings and events.”

On June 26, 2019, the Camarillo City Council authorized the City Manager to issue a Request for Proposals (RFP) for wedding and event management services should negotiations with the Foundation fail to result in a new Lease Agreement. This action is a necessary step to ensure the success of planned operations of private weddings and events at the Camarillo Ranch. The issuance of an RFP does not obligate the City to award a contract for these services should negotiations with the Foundation result in a new Lease Agreement, or for any other reason. Camarillo Ranch staff currently employed by the Foundation will be encouraged to submit a proposal.

Councilmember Charlotte Craven commented at the meeting, “We are doing this just to make sure that every single wedding and event that has been booked will continue. There will not be a glitch; there will be no pause in services.”

This action was prompted by the Foundation’s issuance of a 90-day termination notice, which was delivered to the City Council at the June 17, 2019, City Council meeting.

Negotiations between the City and the Foundation were initiated on April 3, 2019, in a letter from the Camarillo Ranch Foundation to the City Manager, whereby the Foundation requested an Ad Hoc Committee of the City Council meet with an Operating Task Force of the Camarillo Ranch Foundation to discuss the current Operating Agreement, and to specifically request that the City take over full responsibility for the maintenance of the Ranch’s structures and grounds.

Subsequent negotiations followed, leading the City to draft a proposed Lease Agreement that would have the City take over all maintenance of the structures and grounds, and shifting the responsibility for the wedding and event business to a third-party City contractor. The City would use the revenue generated by the wedding and event business to maintain the structures and grounds, a current responsibility of the Foundation.

The proposed Lease Agreement was presented to the City Council on June 17, 2019, and was immediately rejected by the Foundation. In addition, Foundation President Charles Devlin delivered notice to the City Council at the June 17, 2019 meeting, that the Foundation would be terminating the current Operating Agreement in 90 days, in accordance with Section 2(b)4 of the current Operating Agreement. However, Mr. Devlin stated that the Foundation was open to continued negotiations.

Although negotiations with the Foundation will continue, the Foundation’s issuance of a 90-day termination notice prompts the City to plan for the continuation of booked weddings and events should the parties fail to agree by September 15, 2019.